Sunday, September 24, 2006
Capitol Beach! This is the scene just outside the new showpiece mega-station in formerly East Berlin. East is West and West is East. Griping I heard at the time, and in articles since - is that West Berliners are quite anxious and envious over the rapid advance of East Berlin. When the wall came down, virtually everything was up for sale. And with no development and improvement during the Soviet period - East Berlin was a blank canvas for planners and developers to re-invent. The new station (Hanau Banhoff?) has most of the Berlin traffic routed through it now - showcasing the change and robbing many West Berlin vendors of their tourist patronage. My hotel (in East Berlin) was 4-star, (as you'll see) and relatively cheap. "Go East Berlin!", I say.
I found Berlin to be a city like no other, with most everyone English-capable and very warm, friendly and cosmopolitan. Its very ancient/modern like London, and like London - a spirit of fun prevails. Here's the menu at the Capitol Beach.
Here's a piece of children-friendly, easily understood, and functional artwork leftover from the World Cup, recently concluded.